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Toejam & Earl: Back in the Groove's upcoming Version 1.3 update detailed

Jammin' on the update

ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove is a ton of fun to play, but it still has quite a few nasty bugs. We're talking about game-crashing issues, which no one wants to deal with. Thankfully the next patch is in the works, and will be launching soon. Check out details on Version 1.3.0 below.

The first big update in V1.3.0 is that Steam users who backed the game on Kickstarter will be able to unlock Peabo Remix and Lamont Surprise! We are working on adding these to consoles at a later date - these are fun little cosmetic additions we hope our backers enjoy! Check your emails if you bought those tiers or higher, as you’ll be getting a code to unlock the DLC through Steam.

Looking at our Canny, which you can find at: https://tjande.canny.io , we saw the most requested change was to improve the way Tomatoes and Slingshot are firing. Well, we did that! We think the new system works much better, but we want your feedback -- Once 1.3.0 rolls out be sure to let us know what you think of the new controls so we can get this absolutely jammin’!

We’re really excited to announce a brand new language option - European Spanish. Yep!

In our recent Switch update you may have noticed a few optimizations in the way the game loads and now handles, we hope you’ve been enjoying these changes but rest assured we’re not done yet. We’re going to continue to work on framerate on Switch until it gets to a really good place… perhaps even good enough for 4 player local in the future??

A big bug we fixed was that console local co-op game maps should no longer be broken with ‘Level 0’ stuck on top and no tiles being revealed.

That’s all for now! Huh.. there’s more? Oh yeah… are you ready… to speed up… a certain character’s… dialogue… on a hidden level? Well without spoiling it for those of you who haven’t found it, we’re going to be decreasing the speech bubbles for this character so the end game won’t go into super overtime.

We got a bunch of smaller things coming in, updates to the credits with some names we missed, fixes to the manual (if you see any more typos let us know, PLEASE!), fixes to the way achievements and the game title are displayed on console, updating the achievement text in German for PS4 and Xbox One, not being able to start a game on Toddler/Easy Farty on the PC version, a nerf to the secret Golden “Funky” Mailbox, disable presents being opened in the Hot Tub which was causing some issues, lowered a few sounds that were too loud, and reduced the rumble on the Switch version.

*phew* Well that should be all for the upcoming patch.

Be sure to let us know what you think about it once it rolls out! After that, we’ll begin working on v1.4!

Toejam & Earl designer on being happy with giving players nostalgic experiences

Being back in the groove feels so good

ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove is out now on Switch, and I couldn't be happier. I've always been a HUGE fan of the original ToeJam & Earl game. It's something truly magical, and a wholly unique co-op experience. Subsequent entries in the series weren't bad, but they lacked a certain charm and magic the original had in spades. ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove is the first game in the series to recapture that magic and build on it.

ToeJam & Earl designer Greg Johnson is more than happy to give fans a way to get back to that classic vibe. In an interview with Gamasutra, Johnson explains that he finds evoking nostalgic feelings is something to be proud of.

I always find the comment amusing that “all it brings is nostalgia.” What makes people nostalgic are wonderful memories. No one gets nostalgic over things they don’t care about. “OMG!! That’s that game I loved when I was a kid! I played it with my parents or my brother and sister and remember staying up late and laughing our a%#es off!” That’s nostalgia. If that’s all this “game brings,” then I think I’m pretty darned happy to help people relive that and share it with a new generation of people they care about.

For people who have no connection with this and don’t understand why others have such fond memories of it--well, fine. No worries. But respect the love others have for something. Or maybe just go see The Grinch who Stole Christmas. I think that might be the movie for you.

Toejam & Earl: Back in the Groove getting Version 1.2.3 update tomorrow

Big Earl bumpin bugs

There are quite a number of bugs in ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove, which HumaNature Studios acknowledged from the get-go. They said a patch was in the works, and it would launch soon. Loosk like they were telling hte truth, as Version 1.2.3 is set to hit Switch tomorrow! Patch notes haven't been released, but the dev team says this update includes, "Lots of fixes and fun!"

Toejam & Earl: Back in the Groove sees 40% of its sales on Switch, beating out every other platform (patch news and more)

Jammin!

I always knew Nintendo fans had great taste! The ToeJam and Earl: Back in the Groove Kickstarter has updated with a bunch of new info, including sales data. We now know that 20 days after launch, ToeJam and Earl: BitG has sold the most on Switch! The game has moved over 25k units, accounting for around 40% of total sales.

You can get full sales data, as well as a look at what's ahead for the game in the Kickstarter snippet below.

As of right now, we can only give general sales data, but we can say that physical and digital combined, we’re at over 25,000 units sold on Switch,12,000 on steam and PS4 each, and around 5,500 on Xbox, for a total of around 53,500 units sold between presales and launch. So far so good!

As we’ve mentioned before, we need to sell around 150,000 lifetime to break even as we do have money that needs to get paid back (this game was in development for a long time!), so we have a little way to go, but that’s a great start and we think if we can keep momentum rocking, we can do this!

Platform Availability of Updates
As of writing, here is where the current platforms are with build numbers -- we’re trying to keep things as in parity as possible, but some certification processes take longer than normal

PS4 -- 1.2.3
Switch -- 1.1.2 (with 1.2.3 in cert)
Steam - 1.2.2 (working on 1.2.3)
Xbox One -- 1.2.2 (working on 1.2.3)

Lamont/Peabo Surprise

So we’ve been pretty tight lipped about Peabo and Lamont stuff but we’re finally ready to reveal what these two bad boys are! First, Peabo’s Surprise is the ability to dance on command! You activate this by the Quick Chat menu and select ‘Dance’. When this happens all the trees and bushes around you will dance as well (similar to what happens when you open a Boom Box). We can’t wait to see y’all bust some funky moves in front of the Wiseman after you just went on a popping spree with the Slingshot!

And now for the Funkopotamus himself - Lamont’s Surprise! This is a super cool Lamont costume head piece that all the Funkotronians can wear! While wearing the Lamont head you will also get some special dialogue that unlocks while wearing it. This functions similarly to ‘Earthling Disguise’ where you can still wear your Power Hats under it. Can you fool those silly Earthlings into thinking that the great Funkopotamus is chillin’ on Earth?

We are aware that some of these may be sought after by those of you who didn’t back to unlock them. We are considering giving these rewards away to contest winners and outstanding/active members of the community. Stay tuned for more info on that!

Road Map

Willie hears ya, and Willie DOES care. We love all the feedback and bug reports that have been coming in, KEEP IT UP! If you spot something that doesn’t feel right feel free to shoot us an email at bugs@humanaturestudios.com and we will do our best to address it. We also have a Canny set up over at: https://tjande.canny.io/ where you guys can upvote the most common bugs or most requested features and those will be the ones we prioritize. Also - as always feel free to join our Discord and discuss these feedback and bugs reports here: https://discord.gg/4TuKvgT

Also you may have noticed we rolled an update out on Steam that was causing some crashes. We apologize for any inconvenience this caused and we worked quickly at reverting it to the previous version. This was because a Unity update caused some wonkiness in our build and Dark Levels were crashing for a high number of players. Going forward we are considering adding an Update Test Branch to Steam so we can test updates a bit before rolling them out to everyone.

Aside from fixing the Dark Levels, we have many other fixes we are looking into. Such as a number of issues on Switch where players are experiencing crashes when using the Elevator online, inconsistencies when loading previous saves, and increasing the performance in split screen multiplayer.

We are also considering limiting how far players can actually fall down levels in multiplayer so that there will be less stability issues across the board. By making it so that players can’t fall more than 1 or 2 levels, there will be less levels loading in and should result in an increase in framerate. Let us know what you think about this idea in the comments.

There are a number of manual fixes coming as well, but if you see a typo or anything wrong be sure to let us know so we can get this thing perfect for y’all before we print it for our physical collectors.

There are also some smaller (although very frustrating) fixes coming like the map not working in multiplayer by always showing ‘Level 0’ and no tiles being revealed. Problems with Swap Bodies and the Secret Level causing sounds to disappear. If there is anything you think should be given priority be sure to mention it in the bugs@humanaturestudios.com email or the Canny/Discord links mentioned above. We’re gonna do our best to make this game perfect for you, thanks for your patience on this journey.

Check out the full update here

IGN Video - Funkin' Around in ToeJam and Earl: Back In The Groove

Those groovy unofficial SEGA mascots from the 90s are back on Nintendo Switch, so we played some co-op!

Toejam & Earl: Back in the Groove seeing Switch release in Japan

Toejam & Earl: Back in the Groove just recently launched in North America and Europe, but, what about our friends in Japan? We're happy to report that Kakehashi Games is going to be handling localization duties for the title. Unfortunately there's no release date, but Kakehashi Games did say they'll be releasing it sometime within the next few months.

ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove dev team talks DLC interest, bringing the duo back, 4-player local multiplayer, potential sequels, and more

After quite a long development period, ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove is finally out! To celebrate the momentous occasion, the ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove dev team took to Reddit to answer some questions from fans. Check out a summary of the questions below.

On a sequel in the style of ToeJam & Earl: Panic on Funkotron

I would love to! Lots of fans have asked for this. It just depends on how successful this one is. IT would be a total blast to do another side-scroller type like that. I would love to go back to Funkotron, and maybe lots of other planets. I actually have a whole story already planned for that one.

Adding 4-player to consoles

We hope to be able to add 4 player local play to all consoles if this game sells enough to give us more dev time. For now you can play 4 player via network so hopefully that will hold you over for awhile. We have more optimizing to do to get it to run on consoles with 4 player local play.

DLC plans

Planning... well hoping is more accurate. It depends on if this game makes enough for us to keep going. We have lots of ideas about what we want to do. Here's hoping we get the chance.

On the potential for another 3D entry in the series

I doubt it, but never say never right? There are lots of new cool non-photo-real rendering techniques these days that make 3D look like not-3D. I could see doing something like that perhaps. Maybe a VR TJ&E?

Macaulay Culkin getting involved

It was actually through AMA. Macaulay posted that photo of himself playing on the night of the Grammys and I reached out to him after that. Then he and his brother Keiran and good friend Stew came up to our office for a 3-day marathon toejam play session. It was a blast. All 3 of those guys are pretty crazy and pretty into TJ&E.

It was beyond exciting to meet him. Of course, he is an icon both from Home Alone and now from Bunny Ears, but more than that he is just a really fun crazy guy. He says whatever pops into his mind and his mind is a fascinating place. I love that guy and hope I get to hang with him some more. When he is with his brother and friend Stew they are like a total comedy act. Far as what he contributed to the game - we got lots of feedback about presents and Earthlings and game balance from him and his crew. Lots of Multi-player feedback especially. They actually knew game one better than I did sometimes. We also added a special powerhat based on Macaulay.

The DS pitch that never got off the ground

We never got as far as "working on it". It was just a pitch to try and get funding, Never got off the ground. It was before the 3DS though. Pretty sure it was just for the DS. We had some fun ideas about how to use the 2 screens.

On why TJ&E came back

It seemed like the right time. I have been wanting to see them come back for decades... and KickStarter seemed like it would finally make that possible. Other games? LIke Panic or Mission to Earth? Maybe Panic - we'll see. Depends on how well this one does I think. We just launched this rocket - gotta see if it gets into orbit or not.

ToeJam & Earl co-creator talks about the challenge of building a sequel

Toejam & Earl: Back in the Groove is finally available, after years and years of development. Many fans view this outing as the first true sequel to the original game back in Oct. 1991. Yes, there were Genesis and Xbox sequels, but many fans felt those entries just strayed too far from what made the first game great. In an interview with NWR, HumaNature’s Greg Johnson discusses what makes it so tough to create a good sequel.

“Building a sequel to a beloved franchise is actually a tricky thing. You need to walk a line, as players want fresh new features, but they also want it to feel very true to the original gaming experience. We did add quite a lot to this game, but it will really be up to the old ‘skool’ fans to let us know how we did walking that line."

Toejam & Earl: Back in the Groove - Giant Bomb quick look

ToeJam and Earl have crash-landed back on Earth in ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove!, a funky fresh roguelike adventure infused with old skool hip-hop and jam packed with awesome throwbacks to the 1991 classic. Original Funk Lord (and co-creator) Greg Johnson is back at the helm with the sequel that ToeJam and Earl fans have been waiting for!

ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove! Arrives on Switch TODAY

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – March 1, 2019 – ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove!, the fourth entry of the beloved, funkadelic action roguelike series from HumaNature Studios, returns with a new adventure on Nintendo Switch™, PlayStation®4, Xbox One, PC and Mac via Steam today.

After crash-landing on Earth and mingling with those wack Earthlings in 1991, ToeJam and Earl are back, in more ways than one. On a joyride in Lamont’s Rapmaster Rocket, the duo takes their crew to see where all the craziness began. One accidental press of the “Black Hole - DO NOT PRESS” button later, both Earth and the Rapmaster Rocket are in pieces. Squad up, find those ship parts, learn to love (and hate) Earthlings all over again, and get back home!

ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove! re-imagines the original Sega Genesis classic while still serving as a fresh, modern sequel. Seek out ship parts hidden throughout procedurally-generated levels filled with goofy secrets. Scoop up presents that can either help or harm ToeJam and Earl — can’t know ‘til they’re unwrapped! Sometimes they get lucky and find slingshot tomatoes to pop foes or Icarus wings that let the pair soar across dangerous gaps. Other times? Yo. We don’t talk about the other times.

Tired of being called a “Weiner?” Scrounge up some XP to quickly rank up and leave that starting title behind. With each increasing rank, the characters’ stats — speed, health, present skill, search skill, inventory size, luck — improve, and getting back to Funkotron seems more likely. Unlock the full nine-character roster, all with their own stats and abilities, and earn power hats that offer persistent upgrades between runs for endless good times.

More than 50 Earthlings roam, funkin’ up ToeJam and Earl’s plans. Old “friends” like the Insane Dentist and Ice Cream Truck return, but modern times bring modern humans. Internet Trolls chuck weaponized swear words, and the Texting Person stares at their phone and tramples anyone in their path. Not all of ‘em are bad, though — that dude in the carrot suit’s legit.

Everything’s better with a homie, so drop into local or online multiplayer with up to four (online) old pals or new buddies. Rebuild the Rapmaster Rocket with their help, or jump into dope mini-games like the HyperFunk Zone, a side-scrolling track full of presents and cash. Get into dance battles with funky tunes, including classic remixes from the original.

“Our fans have waited a long time for a true sequel to the original Toejam & Earl game,” said Greg Johnson, founder of HumaNature Studios. “We've taken elements from Panic on Funkotron as well, and updated it all with fresh graphics, great funkadelic music, and an absolute ton of new features that emphasize replayability and multiplayer fun. I couldn't be happier with how this game has turned out. I'm hoping our fans will feel like it's just what they've been waiting for!”

ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove is now available in English, French, Italian, German, Spanish (Spain), and Brazilian Portuguese for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Windows PC and Mac via Steam for $19.99 USD.